Earlier this week, ‘Dark Knight Rises‘ fans took a few critics to task for their negative reviews and by that we mean “issued death treats.” Threats of violence against a movie critic for a negative review is a little extreme, but when director Christopher Nolan was asked his opinion at the ‘Dark Knight Rises’ London premiere, he didn’t condemn that Batfans, he actually defended them.

When asked in London about the death threats made against critics Marshall Fine, Christy Lumiere and Eric Snider for their negative ‘Dark Knight Rises’ reviews, Nolan had this to say about the fan responsible:

I think the fans are very passionate about these characters the way a lot of people are very passionate. Batman’s been around for over 70 years and there’s a reason for that. He has a huge appeal, so I think you know people certainly respond to the character.

Mr. Nolan – Chris, if we may – you seem to not be understanding what’s going on here. Online fanatics are threatening the lives of people, sometimes in very graphic detail (one reader told Fine he would beat him with “a thick rubber hose into a coma” while another told him Snider would blow up him and his family), something that goes beyond the boundaries of “passion.”

It’s great when people “respond” to a character like Batman (that is, after all, why we’re all here) but said responding should not involve terroristic threats, a crime that is punishable by five years in jail.

This was Nolan’s big chance to dampen the fervor surrounding ‘Dark Knight Rises’ fanaticism and instead he fanned the flames. The big joke is “In Nolan We Trust” but there is some truth to that among fanboys and if Nolan gives even implicit approval of such heinous acts, why should there be any reason to treat film critics with future respect?

What do you think? Should Nolan condemn this type of behavior? Or is this much ado about nothing?

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